Luis Jiménez (sculptor)

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Luis A. Jiménez Jr.
Born (1940-07-30)July 30, 1940
El Paso, Texas
Died June 13, 2006(2006-06-13) (aged 65)
Hondo, New Mexico
Nationality American
Alma mater University of Texas
Known for fiberglass sculpture, prints
Spouse(s) Susan Jimenez

Luis Jimenez or Luis A. Jiménez, Jr. (July 30, 1940 – June 13, 2006) was an American sculptor of Mexican descent.[1] He was born in El Paso, Texas and died in New Mexico. He studied art and architecture at the University of Texas in Austin and El Paso, earning a bachelor's degree in 1964. His post-graduate work was at Cuidad Universitaria, Mexico City, D.F. in 1966. He became an accomplished artist and taught art at the University of Arizona and later the University of Houston.

Over the past 30 years, Jimenez has produced an extraordinarily consistent body of work informed by his highly developed craft skills, knowledge of art history and his particular placement in time.[2] Jimenez was known for his large polychromed fiberglass sculptures usually of Southwestern and Hispanic themes. His works were often controversial and eminently recognizable because of their themes and the bright, colorful undulating surfaces that Jiménez employed. John Yau observes One of the underlying reasons his public sculptures have been controversial is because he keeps bringing into view that which has been overlooked; he keeps reminding us that our history is made up of many points of view, many tales and tellings.[3] A reexamination of the context and purpose of public sculpture and the making(writing) and remaking(rewriting) of the untold tales and popular myths about the formation of the continually changing American West.[4] He was influenced by the murals of José Clemente Orozco and Diego Rivera. Jimenez is very much a contemporary artist whose roots are in pop art, as much as they are in both the modernism of the Mexican muralists and the regionalism of Benton and Grant Wood.[5] Heroic sculptures are Mr. Jimenez’ forte, but his art is for the people. Proud of his Chicano heritage and working class background, he champions the common man.[6] Working in his father's shop, making neon signs, as well as lowrider car culture, featuring brightly painted fiberglass bodywork, were also artistic influences.[7] He unapologetically finds his images in stereotypes and magnifies those stereotypes into a kind of celebration.[8] As much as anything, what makes Jimenez’ sculpture alive, what makes it sculptural, it also gives life to Olmec heads, Aztec serpents, and the statues of Rodin, and the totems of David Smith: movement. The movement in the work of each gifted sculptor has its own personality and content.[9]

Jimenez has adorned parks, plazas, and public spaces from San Diego to Washington, D.C. from El Paso to North Dakota with popular icons - sculptures whose brightness and ebullience speak to the perpetual newness of the American experience - whose formal elegance speaks to the antiquity of the traditions out of which the newness springs.[10]

In 1993, he was a recipient of the New Mexico Governor's Awards for Excellence in the Arts.[11] In 1998 he received a Distinguished Alumni award from the University of Texas in recognition of his artwork.

Since 1985, Jimenez has lived in Hondo, a small community nestled in fruit orchard country in southeastern New Mexico. His studio is in a former apple processing shed, and he resides in a renovated old schoolhouse with his wife, Susan, his sons, nine year old Adan, eight year old Orion, and his five-year-old daughter, Xochil. His eldest daughter lives in New York, where she creates fashions designs.[12] He was killed in his studio in Hondo, NM on June 13, 2006, when a large section of Blue Mustang, intended for Denver International Airport, fell on him and severed an artery in his leg. The sculpture was based on the eight-foot-high sculpture Mesteño (Mustang), on display at the University of Oklahoma.[13]

Jiménez's daughter Elisa is a multimedia artist and fashion designer and was a contestant on Season 4 of Bravo's reality television series Project Runway.[14]

Works[edit]

Collections[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://books.google.com/books?id=kDFMR0dlrrkC&printsec=frontcover&dq=%22Famous+latinos%22#PPT190,M1
  2. ^ Whitney, Kathleen (July–September 1997). "Luis Jimenez: Communities, Cultures and Controversies, Man On Fire". Sculpture Magazine. 
  3. ^ Yau, John (1994). "Looking at America the Art of Luis Jimenez"/ Man on Fire. pp. page 39–46. ISBN 0-8263-1551-8. 
  4. ^ Yau, John (1994). "Looking at America the Art of Luis Jimenez" /Man on Fire. pp. page 39–46. ISBN 0-8263-1551-8. 
  5. ^ Yau, John (1994). "Looking at America the Art of Luis Jimenez"/Man on Fire. pp. Page 41. ISBN 0-8263-1551-8. 
  6. ^ Kutner, Janet (June 1, 1997). ""Art and Soul: Luis Jimenez"/Dallas Morning News". 
  7. ^ Questions and Answers about Luis Jimenez' Southwestern Pieta - Hispanic Research Center, Arizona State University, 2001
  8. ^ Curtis, Gregory (May 1997). ""Study In Stereotypes",". Texas Monthly. 
  9. ^ Brenson, Michael (1994). "Movement’s Knowledge", Luis Jimenez, Working Class Heroes, Images From the Popular Culture. 1994. pp. pages 11–20. ISBN 0-8263-1551-8. 
  10. ^ Hickey, Dave (1994). "Luis Jimenez and the Incarnation of Democracy", Working Class Heroes, Images From the Popular Culture. pp. pages 21–27. ISBN 0-8263-1551-8. 
  11. ^ "The Award Winners". New Mexico Museum of Art. Retrieved 13 January 2014. 
  12. ^ Willard, David (Sep 1998). ""Sculptor Luis Jimenez Receives UT's Distinguished Alumni Award"/Department of Art and Art History". 
  13. ^ "Luis Jiménez, Mesteño, 1997". Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, University of Oklahoma. Retrieved Nov 11, 2016. 
  14. ^ "Project Runway Official Biography". Bravo. Archived from the original on 2008-12-17. Retrieved 15 November 2007. 
  15. ^ Border Crossing. New Mexico Museum of Art http://www.nmartmuseum.org/site/about/sculpture/west-sculpture-garden/border-crossing.html. Retrieved 13 January 2014.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  • Landis, Moore, et al., "Man on Fire, Luis Jiménez, El Hombre en Llamas, The Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, New Mexico, 1994
  • Storey, Natalie, Artist Dies in Studio Accident, The Santa Fe New Mexican, June 14, 2006, page 1

External links[edit]